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Old 01-02-2013, 02:56 PM   #1
Dec 2012
Camillus, New York
Posts: 102
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts


I am a beginner brewer to beer and I have seen several recipes. My concern lies with the execution of the recipe. I most of the recipes dont have "Steps" in plain english and are cryptic at times. Can you provide some insight on how to read beer recipes for proper cook times and ingredients.

yeah I know, I'm a noob

Thank you!

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Old 01-02-2013, 03:18 PM   #2
DerekJ's Avatar
Nov 2011
Greenwood, Indiana
Posts: 198
Liked 20 Times on 17 Posts

Post up a recipe you are interested in and we will help you decipher it. At this point we don't even know if you brew extract, BIAB, partial mash, or AG.

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Old 01-02-2013, 03:19 PM   #3
lupulin shift victim
chickypad's Avatar
Jul 2010
SF Peninsula
Posts: 5,124
Liked 923 Times on 748 Posts

I noticed one of your other threads as well, and I think you might be well served checking this out. It is a great book and this version is free online. It will answer many of your questions.

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Old 01-02-2013, 03:20 PM   #4
twalte's Avatar
Nov 2012
Roseville (Sacramento), California
Posts: 393
Liked 30 Times on 28 Posts

Let me see if I can help. I will put my text in red, and I am pasting an example recipe from HBT. This recipe is courtest of GASoline 71 with his Extract - Cascade Log Jam APA (extract with steeping grains)

Recipe Type: Extract Means you are not doing all grain, so no mashing required. Best for beginners and still produces good beer
Yeast: Wyeast 1332 Yeast type...important
Batch Size (Gallons): 5
Original Gravity: 1.056 You want to measure your original and final gravity. It helps you determine alcohol content. It is also your guide as to whether your fermentation is complete.
Final Gravity: 1.012
IBU: 73 Bitterness of the beer
Boiling Time (Minutes): 60
Color: 12 SRM
Primary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 15 to 17 days @ 63 to 66
Secondary Fermentation (# of Days & Temp): 4 to 5 days @ 63 to 66 Many would consider secondary unneccessary...just leave in your primary for 3 weeks
Tasting Notes: Nice hop bite, with a nice malty goodness. Floral hops hit your nose from the glass.

Amber malt extract was used for the more malty flavor, and I added the Crystal Malt, and Carapils steeping grains for color, and head retention respectively.

7 lbs. Amber LMELiquid Malt Extract
1 lb. Crystal 40LGrain..should be milled
1 lb. CarapilsGrain...should be milled

Here is the hop quantities and yeast that you will want to order. Do some research on yeast starters and plan to do it at least one day in advance of brewing to kick your fermentation off quickly.

1 oz. Centennial Hop Pellets
2 oz. Cascade Hop Pellets
.5 oz. Fuggles Pellets

1 oz. Cascade Whole Hops (dry hop)
1 0z. Fuggles Whole Hops (dry hop)

Wyeast 1332 Northwest Ale

This is the first time Ive used the 1332 and I really like how the beer turned out. Come to find out the 1332 is actually the "homebrewers version" yeast that is exactly what was developed for Hale's Ales here in Seattle. The 1056 (American Ale) would be a good substitute. I've only used Wyeast in the "smack packs", so I am not familiar with the other yeasts available from different companies.

I hang the grains in muslin bagsyou can get muslin bags at home brew store, or use 1 gallon nylon paint straining bags from your hardware store. Steep in the 155 degree water with the burner do not want to burn the bag. You are basically pulling some color and flavor from the grains and the fermentables from the Liquid Malt Extract from my large stainless steel spoon over my kettle, just off the bottom, and add 2.5 gallons of water (I used bottled Spring Water). Then heat slowly to 155 degrees. Dipping the bags up and down a few times during the heat-up, kinda like tea bags. Kill the heat and steep with the lid on the kettle for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, I heat another .5 gallons to 155 degrees in a seperate pot to use to sparge the grains. So then I'm boiling 3 gallons of water. It's not a partial mash... just an Extract brew with steeping grains.

After the grains have steeped, sparge with the .5 gallons of 155 degree waterput your grain bag in a collander and pour warm water over it to get all the good stuff out of the grain. It's like a big tea bag., then discard the grains, and the water should still be around 155ish. If not I heat it back up to around 155 and kill the flame again. Then add the LME and stir until it is completely dissolved. Adding the LME before boiling helps to prevent carmelizing. It will sink to the bottom...keep stirring. Your beer will likely be slighly darker using an extract and adding early like this...but the taste will be find

Hit the heat again and slowly bring to a boil. Now for the hop bill for a 60 minute boil:

This is the timing when you add the hops. Everything is a countdown to the end of the 60 minute boil Net, once you get your boiling wort, add 1oz of Centennial hops. When there are 30 minutes left, add 1oz of Cascade pellets. etc. The 60 minute hops add bitterness. The later additions add flavor and aroma but minimal bitterness. If your pot is close to full, keep a close eye on it as you add hops. This is where I have the biggest risk of boilovers. I keep a cup of cold water nearby and sometimes hit is with my Star San sprayer
60 min - 1 oz. Centennial Pellets
30 min - 1 oz. Cascade Pellets
10 min - .5 oz. Cascade Pellets
5 min - .5 oz. Cascade Pellets
2 min - .5 oz. Fuggles Pellets

Add 1 gallon of cold water to 6 gallon fermenting bucket or a 6 gallon carboy (I use Better Bottle plastic carboys). Cool the wort to around 100 degrees, and strain the cooled wort into your fermentation vessel. Then top off with enough cold water to make 5 gallons. Then incorporate the wort and water by shaking the vessel. Wort should be around 70 to 75 degrees. Take a hydrometer reading and then pitch your yeast. Shake again for at least a minute to aerate the wort and combine the yeast.

Compare your results to this
OG should be between 1.052 to 1.057 ( I got 1.056)
FG should be between 1.010 to 1.015 (I got 1.012)

Ferment in primary for 15 to 17 days (or until FG is stable). I went 15 days. Then dry hopped in a secondary. Which is my preference. If you wanna leave the beer in the primary and dry hop. Up to you. The rules are... there are no rules. Go with your gut.

Dry hop bill is:

1 oz. Cascade Whole Hops
1 oz. Fuggles Whole Hops

Dry hop for 4 to 5 days. Again... your choice. I usually do about 4 days for dry hopping.

Then I went straight to the Corny keg. You can bottle as well... just add the appropriate amount of priming sugar to your wort and bottle like you normally would.

Does that help? THe Joy of Homebrewing is a very affordable book on Amazon and a great easy read. I highly recommend it.
"You canít be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline Ė it helps if you have some kind of football team, or some nuclear weapons but at the very least you need a beer"
- Frank Zappa

Reason: Credit the creator of the recipe

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Old 01-02-2013, 03:48 PM   #5
Dec 2012
Camillus, New York
Posts: 102
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Originally Posted by twalte View Post
Really long quote above
Yes! this is what I was talking about. This is a good template to model off of and provide direction on to understand the "Lingo." I wanted a general sence of how to read one of these since the format and syntax is quite different than usual cooking recipes.

Now, in addition to that, is there a more common format that is used to write up a recipe?

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